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Subordinating Conjunctions

Subordinating Conjunctions

Author: Sydney Bauer

This lesson introduces subordinating conjunctions and goes over how they can be used.

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Subordinating Conjunctions introduce a subordinate (or dependent) clause and show the relationship between that clause and the rest of the sentence. Subordinating conjunctions usually show the relationship by responding to one of the following questions: When? Where? Why? How? Under what conditions? To what degree?
Common Subordinating Conjunctions:
After / Although / Because / If / Since / Than / That / Though / When / Where / As / As If / Before / Even Though / Rather Than / So That / Unless / Until / Whether / While
  • Do not use a comma immediately AFTER a subordinating conjunction
Incorrect: When, the well is dry we will have to drill twice as deep to reach the next aquifer.
Correct: When the well is dry, we will have to drill twice as deep to reach the next aquifer.
  • The comma belongs at the end of the dependent clause when the dependent clause appears before the independent clause.
  • When the subordinated or dependent clause appears AFTER the independent clause, do not use a comma between the two clauses.
Incorrect: We will have to drill twice as deep to reach the next aquifer, when the well is dry.
Correct: We will have to drill twice as deep to reach the next aquifer when the well is dry.
  • Here are some more examples of common subordinating conjunctions in action. Pay close attention to where the commas appear!
  • I want to go with you even though I don’t like you.
  • Until she decides to wear matching shoes to school, I refuse to speak to her.
  • You should check the weather report before you go sailing.
  • After we clean up the breakfast dishes, we can paint the lawn red!
  • If you don’t want to help me, I can find someone else. 

Subordinating conjunctions